Monday, July 17, 2006

A Copyright Conundrum - #3

As I try to emphasize copyright in many lessons with my students with the consequences and examples of plagiarism in the publishing and world at large, I am often met with blank stares. I hoped that in other academic settings this was of more concern. However, lately I have been disheartened by some experiences that two authors in my family have experienced. My husband recently wrote a teaching unit for a division of a major university. When the unit was received at the program, the interns working on the project eliminated all the footnotes and references summarily. When the unit was sent back to him for proofreading, the head of the program received an immediate call from my husband who informed him that he had a problem with the lack of citations when he had been so careful to cite things correctly. The citations were restored.

My daughter is working for a think tank in our nation’s capital and is helping to edit a forthcoming book. The book is a collection of articles by experts in the international relations concerning the Middle East. Most of the articles were submitted to her agency with only web links as references. It has become her incredibly time-consuming task to track down these references and she will not be happy until things are cited correctly. Well-regarded professors in major universities and international relations experts submitted these articles. Her professors at Illinois Wesleyan were very meticulous about this issue, thank goodness!

What has happened to make these instances common? What has happened to academic integrity and the issues that we teach as librarians?

In one instance, the lack of a style sheet as they have for World Libraries could have made things much better. However, to completely remove carefully cited information or not to include it at all and not think that is unusual is disturbing to me. Do these issues concern you? What has been your experience, are people in your workplaces indifferent about this?

Sunday, July 16, 2006

Create PDF files on Windows

There is a nifty little program that is free to create pfd files for you windows users. This is from a company called Software 995. This is a program called PDF 995 that I found out about from my tech guy at my middle school. They use it since it is free and doesn't mess up anything on our network. So, download and enjoy!

Saturday, July 15, 2006

School Library Weblogs

It seems to be quite difficult finding school library web logs. Part of that problem may be the security issues and filters. I did find a site that has some listed at the International Association of School Libraries. So if any of you find that information out there in cyberspace, please send them on or post them on your blog for class. It seems as it we want to make these opportunities available to our students to teach them to use the Web 2.o tools in a safe environment, we are fighting city hall. I am committed to finding a way for my eight grade book club to blog about their reading and our books, but so far have not find a way around the filter issue. I will keep at it!

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Lots of good Web 2.0 stuff in SLJ

This month's School Library Journal has a plethora of information concerning Web 2.0 that runs the gamut from parents' fear of the Internet to Bully for Blogging. There is also an article and picture from the ALA Boot Camp (yes, Michael is featured prominently). The picture is only in the print version, sorry. Chris Harris, the author featured in several of our articles for class has an article about Flickr and Bubbleshare. There is also a family networking alternative to MySpace in another article. This issue is full of technology and Internet information. So, if these issues are making their way into SLJ, we school library media specialists need to know more about all these issues.

Sunday, July 09, 2006

Pew Internet Life Study

In looking at all this information and the Internet, there was an interesting article in the July 7th, Chicago Tribune. Here is the link to the article by Steve Johnson. The Pew Internet Life Survey showed that "Gender differences non-existent when it comes to surfing skills."

This is a continual discussion at my house. My husband and I are both teachers and we both just started our first blog for classes we are taking this summer. My husband proudly announced in the car the other day that he was the first one from his class to establish a blog. However, he established a blog, but there are no posts as of yet. I tried to explain to him that it is not a blog unless there is something for people to read when they get to his site.
Both our kids (23 & 21) are established bloggers and laughed that mom and dad are finally joining this phenomenon. In fact, our daughter kept us informed about her experiences at Oxford University in 2003-04 by using a blog. We will see how this progresses.